I have always been pretty open-minded about different ways people choose to parent. I’m under the firm belief that there isn’t just “one” right way to do things. Everyone has their must-haves for the hospital delivery and tips they swear by to get children to sleep through the night. I always figured that my husband and I would have a loose plan, and if it didn’t work, we’d try something else. Plus, you never really know what decision you will make until you are actually in that situation, in my opinion.However, in my time as a parent, some things have not actually happened the way I guessed. Here are five things I used to think before I had kids:
Before I Had Kids
Before I had kids, I used to think going out to a restaurant would be a simple, pretty relaxing experience. I pictured my smiling children happily coloring and laughing while waiting (somewhat) patiently for the food. Now I know that dining out requires planning (Snacks? Check! Charged phones? Check!), lots of patience, and occasionally the unavoidable tantrum that leads us to box up our food, rush from the restaurant with a crying child (or two), and eat our long-awaited restaurant quality meal later at home.
Before I had kids, I used to think that I’d make a meal and serve my kids a plate of food and they’d love it, or at least try it. However, I was blessed with two very picky children, and the majority of mealtimes, the food I’ve worked so hard to make is deemed “yucky” before my children even try a single bite. I’ve done what you’re not supposed to do and become a short-order cook. I am slowly implementing ways to end picky eating and know that, eventually, we will get there!
|Halle wearing a Frozen tutu dress
& Frozen socks.
Before I had kids – heck, even when my first was very young – I used to say my children wouldn’t wear “character” clothes … but now they do. I’m not sure why I have never been a huge fan of t-shirts with Mickey or Dora’s smiling faces, but the shirts were just never my favorite attire. Now that my children are almost 3 and 4 years old, they really have some say in what they wear each day. And therefore, we have a spread of Anna and Elsa dresses and Planes t-shirts in the closets, and these are often the shirts my children beg to wear. After my children spotted character shirts on a shopping trip and I saw the way their eyes lit up, I gave in. It makes them happy, so it’s not worth the fight!
Before I had kids, I used to think I’d make my babies fall asleep alone in their rooms. In fact, we did a version of crying-it-out with my first, and it just never felt right to me. We never really succeeded with sleep training my daughter with the cry-it-out method. Now I have decided that if my babies are feeling sad or scared, I don’t want to leave them alone in their rooms. Every night, I have dishes, cleaning and work that are waiting for me. But I push those chores to the back of my mind, and instead, focus on these sweet moments with my children. I like to talk with my kids about their day (How was school? Who is your best friend? What are you worried about?). I want to tell them, for the fiftieth time that day, that I love them. I want to bask in this time, breathe in their sweet smells, and tell them that they are good and special and wonderful. I want to watch them surrender to sleep, see them relax, and I want to stare at them for just a few moments in the sweet silence.
I used to think I’d have two, or maybe even three, kids who would make me smile. Kids who would gaze up at me with a look that made me feel like the best mom in the world. Kids who would hug me with all their might and tell me that they loved me, and tickle me, and make me
|Love my family!|
laugh by calling me “poopy eyebrows.” Kids who would mean everything to me, ones I would give up nearly anything for, just to ensure that they are happy. Kids that I would protect and stick up for, just like the mama bear I knew I would be.